Homocysteinemia as a risk factor in early cerebrovascular disease.

R P Reis, J Azinheira, H P Reis, M Pereira, A Baptista, M Crespo, J E Pina, N C Ferreira, A S Luís


To determine whether hyperhomocysteinemia represents a risk factor of early thrombotic cerebrovascular disease.In a group of patients under 55 years of age (n = 33, 19 males) which had suffered a stroke from 3 months to 1 year before the study, defined by clinical criteria and presence of cerebral infarction confirmed by tomography, without history or predisposition to embolic disease. The patients were matched with a group of normal controls of checkup program, in terms of age, and sex. Patients and controls with a history of alcoholism, clinical or laboratory signs of renal or hepatic insufficiency or with a history of recent ingestion of Group B vitamins were excluded since these conditions would influence homocysteinemia levels. We measured the plasmatic basal homocysteinemia of patients and controls (HC) and 6 hours later a methionine overload of 0.1 g/Kg body weight (LOAD HC).Patients; Controls; Signific.; Age 46.0 +/- 7.7; 45.9 +/- 7.8; NS; Basal HC. 10.1 +/- 3.4; 8.5 +/- 1.7; p < 0.05; Load HC 28.0 +/- 7.6; 22.7 +/- 5.5; p < 0.01.In this study hyperhomocysteinemia appears as a risk factor for thrombotic cerebrovascular disease before the age of 55;-The measurement of homocysteinemia after the methionine loading test was more discriminative than the basal measurement;-A larger number of patients and controls will be necessary to establish the relative importance of homocysteinemia among other vascular risk factors in cerebrovascular disease.

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